If you love Kansas City
but aren’t quite as in love with city life, this list is for you. We’ve compiled a list of the absolute best Kansas City suburbs, from lively local communities with plenty of amenities to quiet towns with plenty of wide-open spaces.
In these Kansas City suburbs, you’ll get the best of suburban living with an urban center just a quick drive away.
1. Leawood, KS
Source: City of Leawood, KS Government – Parks & Recreation via Facebook
- Total crimes per 100k: 1,212
- Median income: $134,242
The sprawling city parks and good schools in Leawood
make this city is one of the best Kansas City suburbs for adults and children alike. Whether you’re searching for a modern townhouse or a traditional mid-century single family home, you’ll find it in Leawood.
Dine at upscale steakhouse and bar, 801 Chophouse or grab brunch at chic local spot, Room 39. Catch a show by the Leawood Stage Company or hit the links at the Country Club of Leawood.
Not everything in Leawood is for adults only. Kids will love the playgrounds, fields, and picnic spots at Leawood’s six city parks.
2. Prairie Village, KS
Source: City of Prairie Village City Hall via Facebook
- Median income: $83,848
- Total crimes per 100k: 1,056
- Average commute time: 19 minutes
Prairie Village offers home buyers pedestrian-friendly business centers and a variety of housing options, from new construction to historic Arts and Crafts style homes.
Foodies can get their fix at upscale New American restaurant, Story, or enjoy dinner and a show at Standees, a movie theater with a full service restaurant and bar.
The Prairie Village Jazz Festival and 4th of July celebration, Village Fest, are great ways to get to know your neighbors.
3. Kearney, MO
Source: Kearney Courier via Facebook
- Unemployment rate: 3.8 percent
- Total crimes per 100k: 1,615
Tied for seventh is the Kansas City suburb of Kearney, one of the fastest growing cities in Missouri. Home buyers have their pick of big new construction single family homes on large lots.
Drive through coffee shop, A Cup T’ Go, is a local coffee shop with big chain convenience. Foodies have their pick of laid back local restaurants, like La Fuente, a Tex-Mex restaurant, Hunan Garden, or Gino’s Italian Cuisine.
The Jesse James Park has a disc golf course and amphitheater, perfect for outdoor recreation, or residents can hit the links at Mari Mac Golf Complex.
4. Overland Park, KS
Source: Downtown Overland Park via Facebook
- Average commute time: 20 minutes
- Median home price: $224,300
This suburb has a whole lot to offer residents, especially those with children, since a good number of schools in Overland Park
are highly rated. Well-built single family homes on large lots give families plenty of space to spread out.
Oak Park Mall is a convenient shopping center with dozens of major retailers and dining options. Dine at local restaurants like Fiorella’s Jack Stack Barbecue or hit the links at St. Andrews Golf Club, Deer Creek Golf Club, or Nicklaus Golf Club at Lions Gate.
Local parks and walking trails like Indian Creek Trail and the Thomas S. Stoll Memorial Park are scenic spots to stay fit and have fun with the kids.
5. Lenexa, KS
Source: City of Lenexa, Kansas Government via Facebook
- Average commute time: 19 minutes
Full of amenities and conveniently located, it’s no wonder Lenexa makes our best Kansas City suburbs list. Large, new construction single-family homes are common here.
Boating, fishing, swimming, and hiking at the Shawnee Mission Park are perfect activities for Lenexa’s outdoor enthusiasts. Foodies will love local restaurants like Sushi UNI, Holy Land Café, and Pie Five Pizza Co.
Lenexa residents have an average commute time of just 19 minutes, so weekday mornings and weekend trips to Kansas City are a breeze.
6. Shawnee, KS
Source: Shawnee, KS Government via Facebook
- Total crimes per 100k: 1,833
- Unemployment rate: 4.8 percent
Beautiful public parks and local businesses make Shawnee a great place to live. Shawnee also has a range of housing options, from new construction single-family homes to modern condos with amenities on site.
Spend the day strolling through Shawnee Mission Park, cooling off by the lake, or playing with your pup in the off leash dog park area. Local cuisine ranges from classic American pub fare to Latin American fusion. Grab fish tacos at Twisted, pupusas at El Pulgarcito, or authentic Italian dishes at Four Seasons Pizza & Pasta.
Nightlife enthusiasts will love Shawnee’s welcoming neighborhood bars and pubs, from Close Quarters At Johnny C’s sports bar to karaoke dive bar, The Pour House.
7. Olathe, KS
Source: City of Olathe Parks and Recreation Department via Facebook
- Average commute time: 21 minutes
- Total amenities: 2,801
Outdoor enthusiasts will love Olathe. Home buyers have a variety of options, from turn of the century houses to new construction homes on large lots.
With scenic parks like Ernie Miller Nature Center, pristine playgrounds at Frontier Park, and a large dog park at Heritage Park, there are plenty of options for outdoor recreation. Local foodies will love the fresh produce and meat at the Olathe Farmers’ Market in Black Bob Park.
Olathe has something to offer indoor enthusiasts too. The Great Mall of the Great Plains is a convenient shopping center housing big name retailers.
8. Platte City, MO
Source: Platte City Area Chamber of Commerce/EDC via Facebook
- Median home price: $153,400
- Total crimes per 100k: 1,643
With a population of 4,729, Platte City is the smallest place in our top 10. But what it may lack in size, it more than makes up for with a relatively low crime rate and good schools.
Platte City mostly offers single-family homes with good-sized yards. A lot of new the homes aren’t in the city limits, but along Running Horse Road in the pretty country area of unincorporated Platte County.
If you’re looking for a small town with rural feel that’s somewhat removed from the metro, but still not too far out from Kansas City, Platte City is just what you’re looking for.
9. Smithville, MO (tie)
Source: Smithville, Missouri via Facebook
- Total crimes per 100k: 1,195
- Unemployment rate: 3.7 percent
Smithville may just be the best Kansas City suburb for outdoor recreation. The 7,200-acre Smithville Lake has everything outdoor enthusiasts dream of. Residents can enjoy over 175 miles of shoreline, two swimming beaches, over 700 campsites, boat rentals, golf courses, walking and biking trails, hunting spots, and equestrian trails.
Home buyers searching in Smithville will also find plenty of space to spread out, with large single family homes and big backyards.
New American restaurant, Justus Drugstore is the perfect spot for an upscale evening meal, and Brick House Cafe & Pub serves drinks and classic pub food in a laid back eclectic environment.
9. Parkville, MO (tie)
Source: City of Parkville, MO via Facebook
- Median home price: $337,800
- Median household income: $105,948
Parkville is another great place to live that has a non-urban feel but isn’t too far from downtown Kansas City. It’s quiet and clean, with a bustling downtown filled with mom and pop shops and restaurants.
This town is a great place to raise a family. Since it’s pretty safe, you don’t have to worry as much about letting your kids play outside after school.
Parkville’s public schools
, such as Lakeview Middle School and Park Hill South High School, are excellent and among some of the best in the Kansas City area.
Each of the suburbs we ranked had a population of over 2,000, was within about 25 miles of Kansas City, and had at least 100 business listings.
To figure out which Kansas City suburbs were the best of the best, we took a look at the following criteria:
- Amenities per capita
- Standard of living (cost of living, median home value, median rent, median household income, and high school graduation rate)
- Total crimes per 100k
- Unemployment rate
- Total crimes per 100k
- Average commute time
After collecting data for each of the above categories, we ranked each suburb and averaged the scores. The suburbs with the lowest overall scores made our list of best Kansas City suburbs.
To see how the rest of the suburbs we ranked measured up, check out the table below:
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